discovering God's creation

Big Hollow, Heath Wash, Cottonwood Canyon

Big Hollow is located in the Cottonwood Forest Wilderness west of Leeds, Utah. You enter the Big Hollow Creek off of forest road 031. This is a beautiful canyon running south from the forest road, for 1.5 miles, where it joins Heath Wash at the border of the Cottonwood Canyon Wilderness. Heath Wash then runs a further 3 miles before entering the Cottonwood Canyon which then runs for 3 miles to Interstate I15.

Trail Rating

Overall rating of trail = difficult

Distance: 7.6 miles – moderate
Elevation loss: 1000 feet – easy
Terrain: boulder strewn canyon – difficult
Exposure: steep entry – moderate

To see the trail rating system used here see Trail Rating System

Getting There

Take exit 23 from the Interstate I15 and turn right onto Silver Reef Road. Follow the paved Silver Reef Road for 1 mile where it changes to the Oak Grove Road.

Follow the paved Oak Grove Road 0.4 miles where the pavement ends at a bridge and the Dixie National Conservation Area sign.

From here follow the gravel forest road 032 up the hill bearing right at an intersection a short ways along. Continue on road 032 to the Oak Grove Campground Road which turns to the right. This junction is 3.2 miles from I15. Keep straight ahead at this junction where the road changes to forest road 031.

Follow road 031 in a westerly direction for another 3.5 miles for a total of 6.7 miles from I15 to the Big Hollow Creek. This creek can be recognized as it is the first wash crossing past a wet road crossing. Also there is a large parking area on the upstream side of the road. Big Hollow north of the road has many large boulders. The GPS of the Big Hollow Creek crossing is 37.243226,-113.451948.

Directions from I15 exit 23 to the Oak Grove Road


Directions from the Silver reef Road to the Danish Ranch Road
Topo of road to Big Hollow and Yankee Doodle
Road Condition

The Danish Ranch Road, forest road 031, is a fairly good quality road for the most part. There are some rutted and rocky sections which need a high clearance vehicle to navigate.

The Trail

There are two entry points into Big Hollow. You can travel down the wash from road 031 but there is one waterfall obstacle about 500 feet down the creek. This can be navigated along the left side as long as you are not afraid of heights.

Alternatively, walk further along road 031 about 700 feet to an area on the west side of Big Hollow which drops gradually to the canyon edge. There is a small cairn where you leave the road. The trail leaves a fairly flat area above the canyon. From here you can scramble down a fairly steep gravel trail into the creek.

The upper portion of Big Hollow is quite deep and scenic. As you approach Heath Wash, a distance of 1.5 miles, the height of the canyon walls decrease. There are short sections of Heath Wash that are fairly narrow but not too high. Cottonwood Canyon is a wide boulder filled wash but there are several trails that parallel the wash above the wash where the travel is much easier.

Trail highlighted in yellow

Trail highlighted in yellow

Route Down Heath Canyon

Route Down Heath Canyon

Route Down Big Hollow

Route Down Big Hollow

Here are some of the pictures we took in Big Hollow, Heath Wash, and Cottonwood Canyon.